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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

PHIL RIZZUTO, 89 - GONE TO THE GREAT YANKEE IN THE SKY


Aug. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Phil Rizzuto, a Hall of Fame shortstop and 40-year broadcaster for the New York Yankees known for his catchphrase ``holy cow,'' has died. He was 89.

Nicknamed ``Scooter,'' Rizzuto gained a reputation as a speedy pest in lineups that included future Hall of Famers Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Yogi Berra. He was the American League's Most Valuable Player in 1950 and played on seven World Series champion teams.

As an announcer, Rizzuto won legions of fans with homespun commentary, often involving his wife, Cora, or his most recent Italian meal. His popularity spread beyond New York, fueled by his appearance on Meat Loaf's 1978 hit song ``Paradise by the Dashboard Light'' and parodies by comedian Billy Crystal.

``His voice and `holy cow' will be part of baseball for as long as we play the game,'' Yankees owner George Steinbrenner said in a statement.

Rizzuto had pneumonia and died late yesterday after several years of declining health, the Associated Press said, quoting his daughter Patricia Rizzuto. He had been living in a nursing home in West Orange, New Jersey.
READ DAN BOLLERMANS ARTICLE ON BLOOMBERG.COM

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